Colorado Patent of the Month – April 2024

Pathware Inc. has introduced an innovative method for assessing biological samples that promises to revolutionize cytopathology. This cutting-edge approach, known as the near-field Fourier ptychographic system, combines advanced microscopy techniques with computational imaging algorithms to provide detailed insights into biological specimens.

At the heart of this method lies the characterization of a speckled pattern, which is applied by a diffuser to illuminate the biological sample. By positioning the sample relative to at least one light source, the system diffuses light in a speckled pattern either before or after it interacts with the sample. This diffused light is then captured by a sensor, generating a series of illuminated images embedded with the speckle pattern.

Through the iterative reconstruction and stitching together of these images, a whole slide image of the biological sample is created. This comprehensive image allows for the identification of various features, including cell count, nuclei, edges, groupings, and clump size.

Key to the system’s success is its ability to capture images at multiple wavelengths, ranging from 100 to 700 nanometers. This broad spectrum of electromagnetic radiation enables detailed analysis of the sample’s molecular composition.

The system offers flexibility in capturing images with overlapping regions, facilitating seamless stitching and ensuring complete coverage of the sample area. Utilizing a negative channel metal oxide semiconductor sensor, the system captures grayscale intensity with remarkable precision, enhancing image quality and detail.

To further enhance its capabilities, the system incorporates motion control devices for precise sample positioning and focuses diffused light onto the sample using a condenser. Additionally, machine learning and deep learning models are employed to assess sample adequacy and classify regions of interest based on various criteria.

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